With spring starting to bloom, it is a joy to see flowers sprouting up out of the ground bringing color and shades of life to the landscape.

It is so easy during the winter months to get dragged into the dreariness of the early dark nights. There is just something about spring time that makes a heart yearn to be outside, get some sun, and enjoy life.

I am reminded of Isaiah 61:3 where it talks about how the Lord removes a spirit of heaviness and replaces it with a garment of praise.

There are some things in life that are just plain heavy. Whether it be work, school load, working on scholarships for college, finances, health problems in families, or conflict among friends and family, those things are just plain heavy. You can even experience tension in your shoulders and back from that heaviness of life.

Sometime the only way to shake off the heaviness is to literally turn your heart to praise. It is a joyful season, and there are always things to praise the Lord for in your life. Some days it may be as simple as thanking God for the breath in your lungs. Start there if you need to do so. Many battles in life can be fought with an attitude of praise and worship. It may very well take you a minute, but the second you start to think that God is not at work or working on things the way you desire for him to do so, you need to shift your mindset. It is a time to start asking the question, what is he doing? What has he done?

If you are worried about finances for your students' college, shift your thoughts in thanking the Lord for every bill you are able to pay. Thank the Lord for your job, bosses, coworkers, and anything else you can thing of at the moment. It will immediately shift that spirit of heaviness off of you, as well as make you aware of how big your God is even in the smallest of problems.

Caroline Hare is the youth minister at Destin United Methodist Church.